Former Disney Animator, Alex Williams, explains how to show weight in animation.
Alex Williams is the son of ‘Who Framed Roger Rabbit’ Animation Direction, Richard Williams and is currently Head of the animation school at Bucks New University. His animation work has featured in such films as ‘The Iron Giant’, ‘The Lion King’ & ‘Who Framed Roger Rabbit’
These are great! The first two pics are original production roughs from Disney’s Lilo & Stitch (2002). The third pic is a digital composite, showing how they would appear in the finished scene. These drawings are by supervising animators Andreas Deja (Lilo) and Alex Kuperschmidt (Stitch).
Veteran Disney animators and their happiness in returning to hand-drawn animation for The Princess and the Frog. [x] (Names of animators in captions)
“Disney had once announced that 2004’s Home on the Range would be their last traditionally animated film. After the company’s acquisition of Pixar in early 2006, Ed Catmull and John Lasseter, the new president and chief creative officer of Disney Animation Studios, reversed this decision and reinstated hand-drawn animation at the studio. Many animators who had either been laid off or had left the studio when the traditional animation units were dissolved in 2003 were located and re-hired for the project.” [x]
Milt Kahl’s pencil test of Pongo from Disney’s 101 Dalmatians (1961)
Decades after this pencil test was completed, Disney animation legend Andreas Deja would re-discover it and rave:
“Here are a couple exploratory drawings from one of my all time favorite scenes. Milt goes very, very far here as far as graphic representation of this scene. Razor-sharp points and an intense balance of straight against curved lines make Pongo look like a Picasso creation. Yet anatomical correctness is never compromised.
“Even if some people don’t appreciate such a stylized approach to Disney drawing, they buy into it because of the scene’s weight and fluidity of motion. Not to mention the overall convincing emotions a dog goes through when scratching, yawning and collapsing on to a pillow.
“Just a few years earlier, Milt had animated a similar scene with Tramp, as he wakes up inside a barrel near the train tracks. It was in Milt’s nature to constantly challenge himself and try different ways to handle a situation that was somewhat familiar to him. Animated sometime in 1960, even after so many decades this remains a MODERN animated masterpiece.”
Disney legend Andreas Deja just released a book detailing the animation secrets of Walt’s legendary ‘Nine Old Men’!
The official press release:
Learn from the men who changed animation forever. Walt Disney’s team
of core animators, who he affectionately called his “Nine Old Men,” were
known for creating Disney’s most famous works, as well as refining the
12 basic principles of animation.
Follow master animator and Disney legend Andreas Deja (Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin, The Lion King)
as he takes you through the minds and works of these legendary
animators. An apprentice to the Nine Old Men himself, Deja demonstrates
the techniques and fundamentals that these men perfected through famous
works such as Sleeping Beauty, Cinderella, 101 Dalmatians, and
much more. Special attention is given to each animator, accompanied by
Deja’s thoughtful analysis on their techniques with special
consideration given to figure drawing, acting, story structure and
analysis, and execution. The in-depth analysis of each animator’s work
will allow you refine your approach to character animation and make
better creative choices. Rare sequential drawings by the Nine Old Men
are also featured, giving you unprecedented access and insight into the
creative processes of these legendary animators. A gallery of Deja’s own
work and instruction is included, allowing you to learn techniques from
a contemporary master of animation.
Instruction and analysis on the works of each of the Nine Old
Men broadens your creative choices and approaches to character
Original drawings from never-before-seen features are explored in
depth, giving you behind-the-scenes access into Disney animation history
Companion website features pencil tests in motion and additional anecdotes and resources about the Nine Old Men